Peatlands Research

The British Ecological Society's Peatlands Research Special Interest Group.

Contact

Secretary:  Ian Rotherham or Peatlands@BritishEcologicalSociety.org
Deputy Secretary: position open
Publicity Officer: position open
Events and publications details: Christine Handley
Social media: Twitter

Background

Peat and peatlands are critically significant in climate change and environmental resilience to change. Not only reservoirs of tremendous significance for their biodiversity, peatlands are important as storage sinks for global carbon and water. Peatlands are also important sites for understanding human and environmental history. From pollen and insects that tell the story of long-term environmental change, to bog bodies and bog ‘oaks’; peat palaeo-ecological records preserved in peat profiles hold information on past times and events.

The Peatlands Special Interest Group emerged from the former Mires Research Group. Acting as a hub for a wide range of external partners and collaborators, the group helps to disseminate skills, knowledge and enthusiasm for all aspects of peatlands, including their conservation and restoration.

Aims

  • Forum for exchange of information between ecologists, conservationists, land managers, policy makers, and others interested in peat and peatlands landscapes;
  • Foster and promote understanding of all aspects of peatland environments and ecology worldwide and to promote their conservation;
  • Disseminate essential skills and knowledge, through meetings, workshops, field visits, and social media, as well as collaborating with other societies and interested individuals.

Current / Future Meetings

26 April – 21 June 2017: Using woodland indicators and reading tree’d landscapes.

These six 1-day workshops are being run by SYBRG with support from ourselves and Sheffield Hallam University. They are suitable for landscape archaeologists and historians, researchers and students; as well as ecologists with an interest in using indicators to interpret landscapes; and local volunteers. The workshops are designed to develop skills in using woodland indicator species to gain a greater understanding of the history within tree’d landscapes: ancient semi-natural woods (ASNW); planted ancient woodland sites (PAWS); wood-pasture and wood-meadows; and shadow woods.

MORE INFORMATION AND REGISTRATION

23 – 24 May 2017: Wood Meadows and Pastures. Sheffield, UK.

This landmark event comes at a time of colossal challenges for nature conservation – globalisation, climate change, and economic austerity just a few of the issues. As a part of the overview of the themes of the conference, Ian Rotherham will review ideas stimulated by the works of Frans Vera, the late Oliver Rackham, and George Peterken in driving forwards understanding of ‘Woods’, ‘Wood Meadows’ and ‘Wood Pastures’ in landscape evolution. This includes emerging work on ‘Shadow Woods’.

MORE INFORMATION AND REGISTRATION

6 – 8 September 2017: Peatlands for Birds: Fens, Mires and Bogs: re-constructing peat landscapes in uplands and lowlands. Sheffield, UK.

Our event brings together researchers, conservation practitioners, agencies, landowners and managers, and others to discuss critical issues of the re-construction of peat habitats from fens to bogs and mires for birds.

MORE INFORMATION AND REGISTRATION

Committee

With members from across the world, the group has an informal committee and works closely with the UK branch of the International Peat Society.

  • Rachael Maskil  Moor
  • Kieran Sheehan
  • Simon Caporn
  • Olivia Bragg